Article published in:Study Abroad Research in Second Language Acquisition and International Education
Vol. 4:2 (2019) ► pp. 224–251
The digital dilemma
L1 and L2 technology use, language learning, and motivation among US university students studying abroad
The study abroad (SA) experience now involves increased learner access via technology to the home (in the L1) and to the host culture (in the L2). L1 technology use could detract from host culture integration and language learning by allowing SA participants to remain immersed in the L1, while L2 technology use could aid in host culture integration by connecting participants to L2 speakers. Given this, it is urgent to determine the nature of the impact of L1 and L2 technology use abroad on motivation, language gains, and host culture integration. In the present study, we analyzed daily technology logs, learner motivation and L2 gains, and guided reflections on host culture engagement and L2 learning goals by eleven US university students studying abroad in Argentina. Motivation and L2 abilities increased significantly, and were positively correlated. Also, L1 and L2 digital contact showed important qualitative relationships with motivation and host culture integration.
Keywords: L2 Spanish, technology, host culture integration, motivation
Published online: 24 July 2019
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